Papers and Conferences

Research papers

Prior to taking up my post at Birkbeck, I delivered twenty-seven research papers on subjects including museology, numismatics, history, and archaeology, at national and international gatherings in Britain, Europe, India and the USA, including the Institute of Historical Research Earlier Middle Ages Seminar and the Oxford University Late Antique and Byzantine Seminar. In addition to formal presentations I am regularly invited to chair and respond at major international conferences. Papers delivered since coming to Birkbeck are itemised here (starred papers by invitation):

July 2019 (University of Leeds): ‘Discourses on absence, or Kalabhra and and Vakataka monetary policy in early medieval southern India’, at the Leeds International Medieval Congress, on a panel organised by myself and the Birkbeck Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies.

*March 2019 (KCL): ‘Foreign trade in the early Byzantine Empire: beyond the Silk Road’, at the KCL Seminar Series in Late Antique and Byzantine History.

*December 2018 (University of Lincoln): ‘New players, old models? Muslim and Christian actors in the western Indian Ocean from the 7th-10th centuries’, at British Academy ‘Rising Stars’ network conference led by Dr Rob Portass. Video to be published on British Academy website.

October 2018 (University of Ghana, Accra): ‘Back through Byzantium: textual transmission and the global premodern’ at the conference ‘Classics and Global Humanities’.

July 2018 (University of Leeds): ‘Between remembrance and necessity in Crusader-period architecture’, at the Leeds International Medieval Congress, on a panel organised by the project ‘Re-evaluating the Art of the Crusades’.

April 2018 (University of Leeds): ‘What is the difference between a frontier and an edge?’, at the British Academy-funded conference ‘Re-thinking the Medieval Frontier II. Invited for publication, to be submitted by November 2019.

February 2018 (Bilkent University, Ankara): ‘Is an island always a hub? Sokotra, Sri Lanka and the shape of commerce in the Late Antique western Indian Ocean’, at the British Academy-funded conference ‘Not the Final Frontier: the world of medieval islands’, in press as part of Al-Masaq special issue.

*February 2018 (Bilkent University, Ankara): ‘Speaking in many voices: Byzantine coins in south India as sources for maritime and inland histories’, Bilkent Public Lecture.

January 2018 (Department of Archaeology and Museums, Telangana State, Hyderabad): ‘Roman and Byzantine coins and the economy of ancient Telangana’ at the Second International Conference on Telangana History, ‘Telangana Through Ages’, in press in conference proceedings. My reflection on this event for the Birkbeck Blog can be found here. The event was also covered by The Hindu in the article, ‘A Walk through Ages‘.

*November 2017 (Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery): ‘In the evenings Mr Hart liked to read his books or look at his coins’, at the conference ‘“Something for my native town”: recent discoveries and new directions in the R. E. Hart Collection. A version for publication has been accepted, pending revisions by the Journal of the History of Collections, revisions due May 2019.

*November 2017 (Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham): ‘Sri Lankan coins in the Barber collection?’, at the conference ‘The Barber Coin Collection: Past, Present and Future Research’. 

5th July 2017, Leeds: ’Who ate all the pepper? Definitions and concepts of ‘elite’ and ‘non-elite consumption’ in the early medieval Mediterranean’, presented at the Leeds International Medieval Congress on a panel organised by the Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies. Invited for publication in the edited volume arising from the panel, submitted and with editors.

26th June 2017: ’Byzantine gold coins in south India’, presented at the International Colloquium on Byzantine Gold Coins in Late Antiquity, Northeast Normal University, Changchun. Submitted for publication in a special issue of the Journal of Ancient Civilizations, peer-reviewed and in press.

24th April 2017, Leeds: ’Seen from across the sea: India in the Byzantine worldview’, presented at the Medieval Group Seminar at the Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds.

25th March 2017, Birmingham: ‘India in the Byzantine worldview’, presented at the 25th Spring Symposium of Byzantine Studies, University of Birmingham. Submitted for publication and through editorial review.

9th March 2017, St Andrews: ’By land and sea: comparing Byzantine and Sasanian policies towards eastern trade, c. 350-600’, presented at the Middle East History and Iranian Studies Seminar, University of St Andrews.

17th January 2017, Hyderabad: ‘Worth and value: new readings of Roman coins in the collection of the Telangana State Archaeology Museum’ presented at the international conference Rediscovering Telangana.

9th July 2016, Leeds: ’Trading with the enemy across the Byzantine-Sassanian frontier’, presented at the Leeds International Medieval Congress on the session Exploring the Medieval Frontier. 

28th May 2016, London: ’Coming or going? Ideas of movement and understanding Byzantine coins in India’, presented at the Annual Birkbeck Medieval Seminar, on the theme Things on the Move.

*18th February 2016, London: ’Endorsed by western privilege: modelling imperial power in Western Indian Ocean commerce’, presented at the Comparative Histories of South Asia Seminar, Institute of Historical Research.

*3rd December 2015, London: ’Late Antique (c. 300-800) links between the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean: disconnecting connectivity’, presented at the conference, Geography and Infrastructure of trade in early Islam (800-1000 CE), SOAS. Paper under review for publication in the Journal of Late Antiquity, report due April 2019.

25th September 2015, Taormina (Sicily): ’All that glitters…: the Byzantine gold solidus, c. 300-1092’, presented at the 25th International Numismatic Congress, Taormina, Sicily. Published.

Conference Organisation

Prior to taking up my position at Birkbeck in 2015, I had organised, alone or as part of a committee, seven conferences and three panels or whole-day sessions at international conferences. Conference organisation since joining Birkbeck are itemised here:

1-4th July 2019, University of Leeds

    • Three panels (9 speakers) organised on behalf of the Birkbeck Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies on the title ‘Birkbeck Materialities’ at Leeds International Medieval Congress.

25th November 2017-8th June 2019, Birkbeck

    • Working with Dr Luke Lavan of the University of Kent to four meetings of the ‘Late Antique Archaeologies’ network series at Birkbeck. 

2nd-5th July 2018, University of Leeds

    • Three panels (9 speakers) organised at the on the theme of ‘Byzantine Studies in China’, giving speakers from HE institutions in China a chance to meet with and present their research to scholars at the Leeds International Medieval Congress. This involved coordinating with colleagues at four institutions in China and working successfully with one scholar to obtain funding through the Universities China Council London.

20-24th November 2017, HCA, Birkbeck

    • A roundtable and PhD workshop organised with Dr Luca Zavagno, Bilkent University, Ankara. 

15th November 2017, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities

    • Co-organiser of a one-day colloquium at Birkbeck with Dr Mattia Cosimo Chiriatti, University of Barcelona, on propaganda and persuasion and exile and punishment in Late Antiquity.

3rd-6th July 2017, University of Leeds

    • Co-organiser of three panels (nine speakers) on the theme of ‘Writing the Other’ for the Leeds International Medieval Congress.

25th-27th March 2017, 25th Spring Symposium of Byzantine Studies

    • Symposiarch alongside Prof. Leslie Brubaker (University of Birmingham) and Dr Daniel Reynolds (University of Birmingham). With three days’ of papers and over 100 delegates, this is the premier annual seminar in European Byzantine studies. I was responsible for raising funds, communicating with speakers and managing student helpers during the event. The proceedings are currently being edited for publication.

28th May 2016, Annual Birkbeck Medieval Seminar

    • On the theme Things on the Move. Sole organiser. 4 speakers and 45 attendees for a one-day event.